E. coli found in an ArkLaTex water system

Town issues boil order; school district cancels classes

Boil order issued, classes canceled after E. coli found in Valliant, Okla., water system

VALLIANT, Okla. (KSLA) — There will be no classes Monday in Valliant, Okla., public schools.

And the 971 people served by the McCurtain County town’s water system are being advised to boil the water before consuming it.

That’s because “Valliant PWA water is contaminated with E. coli,” says a notice from the water system.

The bacteria were found Saturday, two days after the 2019-20 school year began.

“These bacteria can make you sick, and they are a particular concern for people with weakened immune systems.”

Craig Wall, superintendent of Valliant Public Schools, subsequently issued the following statement:

“Parents, patrons, teachers and staff, you may be aware that the city of Valliant has been notified of a failed water purity test today. The city is in the process of notifying all residents that the city is currently under a ‘boil order.’ I have been in contact with Valliant PWA and city Officials concerning the issue. The PWA is currently flushing the system and will continue to do so. Although I am assured the failing sample came from an isolated area, it is my duty to act with an abundance of caution concerning the health and safety of our students. Therefore, I am dismissing school on Monday, Aug. 12. It is my hope that additional testing will show that the system has been cleared and that we can resume our normal schedule as soon as possible. I am truly sorry for the inconvenience.”
— Craig Wall, superintendent of Valliant Public Schools

The presence of E. coli indicates the water might be contaminated with human or animal wastes, the city’s notice states.

Such contamination can occur when increased runoff enters the drinking water source. It also can happen as a result of a water pipeline break or a failure in the water treatment process.

To correct this issue, crews are flushing the city’s fire hydrants and more chlorine is being added to the water treatment process.

Meantime, the water system’s 455 customers are being advised to boil water for at least a minute before drinking it or using it to prepare food, make ice and baby formula, brush teeth, wash dishes, clean open wounds or bathe infants who might drink the water.

The water system anticipates the problem will be resolved within a week.

Call Terry Dancer, of Valliant PWA, at (214) 533-8669 to learn more.

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